Story Starters | Homemade Stocking Stuffer for Kids
Okay crafty moms: I've got you covered for a super easy homemade stocking stuffer for kids that they’ll love. We call them “story starters” – they’re great for playing with at home or on the go! We chose a nature inspired theme, but the options to get creative are endless. Kids have so much fun creating their own imaginative stories with these story starter rocks. This homemade stocking stuffer for kids will be one to remember! Make sure to read through the full tutorial for different ways to make this using supplies you have access to.
- Acrylic paint or paint pens
- Cotton/linen bag drawstring bag (make your own or grab one at your local dollar store)
- Optional: Cricut/cutting machine and iron on vinyl or Sharpie
Step 1: Go Rock Hunting!
This is the fun part! Head outside and go rock hunting. Collect an assortment of small, flat, smooth rocks for painting. (Note – if you want to keep this a surprise for your kids, you may or may not want to take them with you!) My kids had a blast exploring and looking for the perfect rocks, although the ones they picked were a little big for this project! They stayed toasty warm in their new Jan & Jul Rain Jackets, Lite Winter Boots, and Gloves and Mittens. I am still amazed that my son wore his mitts! This is a big deal in our house because he has been refusing to wear any mitts until he saw these Jan & Jul ones with the diggers on them – he's obsessed now!
Step 2: Wash Rocks
Clean rocks very thoroughly. I used warm soapy water and an old toothbrush. Let them dry completely before painting.
Step 3: Paint Rocks
Use acrylic paint to paint your rocks. I prefer paint pens, but a brush works too. I painted different things that kids could put together to tell a nature inspired story. Here are some ideas:
- bear / bird / insects
- cabin / tent / fire
- flower / mushroom / tree
- sun / moon / rain / cloud / rainbow
Other fun themes could be farm, ocean, animals, or construction site theme – get creative!
Step 4: Make the Bag
Sewing is sorta my thing, so I made my own bag, but you could buy a small cloth (cotton/linen/canvas) bag from the dollar store and use a Sharpie to write on it. I think the paint pens would also work, or fabric markers!
For making your own, cut fabric 9 inches x 13 inches, sew the side seam first, then fold the top over and sew the top edge for the drawstring to go in. Sew the bottom last, turn. Insert drawstring with a safety pin, tie together and flip the bag right sides out. Press with an iron. The finished bag is approximately 7.5 x 6 inches. More detailed sewing instructions are available in our YouTube video here!
Step 5: Decorate the Bag – Free SVG File!
Now it’s time to decorate your bag! Iron on a vinyl label or draw with a Sharpie or paint/fabric marker. If you have a Cricut, you can grab the SVG file, for free here! Next, iron it on the bag.
Don't have a Cricut? No sweat, just draw or paint the writing and speech bubble. You can use paint markers, a Sharpie or fabric markers, whatever you have on hand!
Now you've got a homemade stocking stuffer for kids! I can see totally my kiddos playing with this in the car or while travelling. I love watching them imagine and come up with their own creative stories using the different pictures on the rocks. If you’re looking for bigger gifts to put under the tree, my little guy is wearing Jan & Jul's base layer set which are amazing as jammies they can wear year-round. They’re so soft and warm, I wish they had them in my size!
Do you have any homemade stocking stuffers for kids that you love? Let us know in the comments! If you’re looking for more creative inspiration, find me @sewbrightcreations on Instagram or on my blog. I hope this idea inspires you and let me know if you create your own! Happy holidays!
xo Jackie, Northern BC Mom & DIYer